A few titles have lately dropped out of the ultra-competitive year-end release calendar, but now one more has jumped into the fray. Gus Van Sant‘s Promised Land is getting a limited NY / LA release in late December, in order to give it a shot at the next Oscar race. The film will then roll out to additional markets starting in January.

Promised Land has mostly flown under our radar the past several months, but now that it’s set a release date the talent involved should attract some attention. Matt Damon and John Krasinski wrote the script based on a story by Dave Eggers. The pair also star, along with Frances McDormand, Rosemarie DeWitt, Hal Holbrook, Scoot McNairy, and Titus Welliver. More details after the jump.

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Although he’s still known as small-screen sweetheart Jim Halpert on The OfficeJohn Krasinski‘s also been building up his film resume with about a dozen films in the past five years. Most of them have landed on the lighter end of the comedy-drama spectrum, but his starring turn in the Sundance indie Nobody Walks sees him traveling into somewhat heavier territory.

Krasinski and Rosemarie DeWitt play a married couple whose lives are disrupted when a beautiful acquaintance named Martine (Olivia Thirlby) comes to stay with them in LA. Krasinski’s character soon finds himself irresistibly drawn to her, as his wife and teenage stepdaughter (India Ennenga) are dealing with illicit longings and impulses of their own. Nobody Walks is the third feature directed by Ry Russo-Young, who seems to be moving away from her mumblecore roots with this polished picture. Watch the trailer after the jump.

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Johnny Depp and Rob Marshall are working to make a new version of The Thin Man, the Dashiell Hammett novel about drunk detective socialite Nick Charles, his charming young wife Nora and the unusual family mystery in which they become embroiled.

The question is: who plays Nora? Deadline says there is a shortlist that will begin to meet with Warner Bros. next week. Names on the list include Eva Green, Amy Adams, Emma Stone, Carey Mulligan, Rachel Weisz, Kristen Wiig, Emily Blunt and Isla Fisher. That is, just about every smart actress with free time in her schedule and an interest in starring opposite one of the few semi-legit movie stars in the business. And without knowing more about what Marshall, Depp and WB are specifically looking for, it seems pointless to try to play the guessing game based on a list that long.

The original The Thin Man, released in 1934, spawned a series of comic detective films and, later, even a TV show, and that precedent is fueling fire that the material might become a hit once again.

After the break, Albert Hughes’ film Motor City might finally have a lead, and Hal Holbrook joins Gus Van Sant’s new film Promised Land. Read More »

After starring with Ben Affleck in last year’s The Company Men, Rosemarie DeWitt is now set to work with Affleck’s BFF Matt Damon in Promised Land. DeWitt has landed the female lead in the “Capraesque” tale, which Gus Van Sant will direct. The script comes from Damon and John Krasinski, based on a story Krasinski cooked up with Dave Eggers. As previously reported, Damon will lead the cast as a sales exec who begins to question his whole life after arriving in a small town, while Krasinski will play a rival exec. DeWitt’s role has not been revealed at this time.

DeWitt’s other upcoming roles include three films due out this summer: Your Sister’s Sister, Neighborhood Watch, and The Odd Life of Timothy Green. In addition, she has a role in the drama Nobody Walks, which also stars Krasinksi and is expected to hit theaters this year. [Deadline]

After the jump, Rhys Ifans and Toby Jones get involved in Jennifer Lawrence’s war against Bradley Cooper.

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Jimmy Kimmel has produced an epic 9-minute movie trailer parody featuring nearly every actor and actress in Hollywood. Movie: the Movie tackles every blockbuster and crowd pleaser movie and movie marketing cliches, and packs them all into one film trailer. Watch the trailer now embedded after the jump.

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Matt Damon has been planning his directorial debut for months now — the film would be one he wrote with John Krasinski, based on a timely story that Krasinski cooked up with Dave Eggers. But just this week Damon backed out of directing the film, because scheduling issues, personal and professional, made the project impossible for him.

But the currently untitled film will still get made, and with Damon in the starring role. Krasinski will co-star, with he and Damon playing “rival corporate executives” in what is being called a Capraesque story. And now, Gus Van Sant will direct. Read More »

For the past few months Matt Damon has been planning to direct his first feature film, a currently untitled movie with a story concocted by John Krasinski and Dave Eggers, and with a script by Krasinski and Damon. The story is that Damon would play a salesman who shows up in a small town, and the upheaval that results.

Now it looks like Damon won’t direct the film after all, though in a slightly strange set of conditions, he could still star in the film. Read More »

Like so many actors before him — including BFF Ben AffleckMatt Damon‘s been harboring aspirations of becoming a director. He announced over the summer that he was getting ready to helm his first film, with The Office‘s John Krasinski set to star. At the time, we figured that the project in question was probably the road trip story Father Daughter Time.

However, it’s now been revealed that it’ll actually be an untitled legal drama that Damon co-wrote with Krasinski. Affleck and Damon will produce the picture, which is set up at Warner Bros. More details after the jump.

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